Today we have a special guest post from Spring 2018 Semester student Jake Mulick. Jake is a politics major from The College of New Jersey, as well as a Spring 2018 Sustainability route scholarship recipient. Here Jake discusses sustainability at FIE, his study abroad experience, and how the film An Inconvenient Sequel helped shape his passion about the environment.
I have no experience with this myself, but I cannot imagine a defeat more crushing than losing a presidential election. Something that can hardly be interpreted as anything but a complete rejection of your ideals and beliefs would be enough to send most people spiraling, or at least to take a sabbatical from public life all together. Following this logic it is evident that Al Gore is a figure worthy to admire. Following the controversial presidential election in 2000, Al Gore took his loss in stride and devoted his life to an incredibly meaningful cause, saving the earth. This pivot has resulted in two major movies, a number of books, and most impressively a Nobel peace prize.
Al Gore’s, “An Inconvenient Sequel,” captures an idea that we’d all like to look away from. The earth is deteriorating at an unprecedented pace and it is entirely at the hands of human beings. He explains the corrosive impacts of power and why we should all view the actions of powerful entitles with skepticism. The most important aspect of this film is the sentiment former Vice President Gore wants us to take with us. The ideals of conservation and sustainability. That we should all endure.
I watched Al Gore’s second movie and learned the value of sustainability in two instances. The first is the actual value of environmentalism and saving the planet. These beliefs are some that I can take with me for the rest of my life, which is important because this fight may never finally be won. The second value in sustainability I learned was the importance of sustaining my FIE London experience. The people I met here and lessons I learned, are life experiences that I need to make sure are sustained for the remainder of my life.
FIE is an institution that promotes sustainability, at nobodies behest, but their own. Similar to the former Vice President they view sustainability as a responsibility. This is an admiral concept, not only because it isn’t required by anyone, but also because we are all benefitting from this initiative. The earth isn’t mine, or yours, or Britain’s or America’s. We all have to live with the same earth and an environment that is equally affected by the actions of someone in Hyde Park, as they are as someone in the Amazon rainforest. Preserving this world comes at no cost to any of us, but it is imperative for us to lead by example. Sustainability is important because it is the constant reinforcement of an ideal. We should all take lead and show why we should constantly reinforce this idea.